If you've known me long enough, you know I dislike Valentine's Day. It took Paul a while to believe me and realize no, I'm not saying that I don't want a card, but deep down I do want and I will get mad if you don't get me one.
This morning we brainstormed some things we are grateful for, as you can see, Santa is on the list. My 8-yr old is very grateful for Santa, believe me. We should be thankful everyday of our lives, but somedays you just can't, somedays, are just blargh and you don't want to be grateful for anything. Thanksgiving reminds us of just that. It reminds us that we have things to thank life for each and everyday.
I used to do a daily exercise of writing down 3 things that made me grateful that day, but a lot of times, I just wrote the same stuff over and over. It's a great exercise to make us dig deep, after all, each day we can find things that make us happy, even on those days blargh.
So, enjoy Turkey day for those in the US or those who aren't in the US, but celebrate Thanksgiving.
Believe me or not, one of the most stressful holidays you can have is when you go back home for a visit. Don't get me wrong, I love going home, but it's stressful. It's a lot of planning and at the end, there's never enough time and you won't see everyone you wanted to see, do what you wanted to do and eat what you wanted to eat. Before you go you should make some rules, nothing strict, of course, but a few will help along the way:
Make a priorities' list
Be flexible, plans (
might)will change, remember! You're on vacation! Go with the flow.
Try to meet up at home or somewhere where you can invite a lot of people and see them all at once, Even if they don't know each other, it will be fun because they are there to see you.
If you plan on traveling, make sure you black out dates and don't be scared to tell people you won't be available.
You are on holidays, but everyone else isn't. Your family & friends have their routines and believe me, they love you very much, but they won't drop everything just to see you.
Enjoy as much as you can, and
Be ok if not everything on your list gets checked off.
In my opinion, the most important thing about going home is to see the ones we love, be with them and at the same time enjoy ourselves. It's hard enough to miss weddings, birthdays, graduations, funerals, so make the most of it when you get the time to visit.
Just remember the list above and have fun!! In any case you will need another holiday when you leave.
In the US, this is the first place that I've lived where there are so many people celebrating Easter, and even some schools and workplaces have Good Friday off. I've always loved Easter, loved, loved. It always reminds me of my childhood with houses full of cousins.
Great memories all around
In the past 3 years, Paul and I have been trying to get into the swing of things, the American way. Before kids, it was easy, we kind of mixed both mine and his culture, celebrated a little, no pressure, but with Victoria it's all different, as we want her to just have fun.
So I get up early and go hide the eggs, with arrows and small plastic eggs as it's the culture here in the US. At the end of the trail we usually get her a basket with stuff. I made the one this year, but in previous years we just bought baskets.
One thing we both miss is chocolate easter eggs. It's so hard to find it here! I've seen tiny little ones, for like 4 bucks. Instead, people buy chicks and bunnies, and they fill small plastic eggs with sweets, prizes or money for the kids to hunt.
The first year we were here, we took Victoria to Encanto park for the famous Easter Egg hunt. It was fun, except that everyone else had the same idea, the park was beautiful, but sooooo packed! You had to stand in line for ages, just to get the kid signed up, then another q for them to go hunting for like 30 seconds. Been there, done that, now no more.
One year we colored eggs and every year in the morning I wake up really, really early (my daughter is an early morning child) and go hide the eggs.
Second egg hunt, in the afternoon with the neighbors
I hope everyone had a great time with their families, if you celebrate Easter.